Most of us have never experienced anything remotely close to the current crisis. It’s left us confused and anxious about what the future holds, both personally and professionally.
Passenger airlines, shipping, hotels, restaurants, gaming and retail industries have been hit the hardest. Other industries that haven’t experienced a dramatic decrease in business may still be inclined to cut back or even halt their ad campaigns. However, if history truly does repeat itself, that’s the last thing they want to do.
From the Great Depression of 1929 to the Great Recession of 2009, research has proven time and again that in an economic downturn, brands that continued to advertise were more likely to survive, and even thrive afterward. Why? The following are a few reasons:
- Competitors who continue to advertise actually do see the forest, not just the trees. They may tweak the message or even cut the budget somewhat, but their advertising won’t come to a screeching halt. As a result, they’ll create top-of-mind awareness with your potential customers – the ones you will lose by not competing head-on.
- Consumers don’t have an “on-off” switch. While it takes time to build awareness, any brand equity you’ve gained over the years can be quickly lost if you pull the plug on your advertising when times get tough. Consumers will buy from the companies with which they’re most familiar and who stayed loyal to them – the ones who continued to advertise.
- If you’re no longer in the public eye, people will assume you’re no longer in business. Obviously, that’s the last thing you want.
- Where broadcast advertising is concerned, more people than ever are tuning in because they’re stuck at home. So not only are you reaching a greater number of potential customers, you’re reaching a much broader demographic during this time.
- Deals, deals, deals. Unfortunately, many “non-essential” companies have either gone out of business, or will be gone soon. They’ve been hit too hard due to government regulations. These businesses spent a huge chunk of ad dollars across the board. As a result, we’ve been able to secure phenomenally lower rates, bonuses and even sponsorship opportunities unheard of until March of this year.
Soon, the economy will be up and running again. If you plan to be here in the long run, don’t abandon the very foundation on which you’ve built much of your success. As the saying goes, “When times are good, you should advertise. When times are bad, you must advertise.”